Those flashing blue and red lights in your rearview mirror can ruin your day – especially when you get hit with a ticket that can cost you hundreds of dollars.
Unfortunately the cost of the ticket isn’t the only expense you’ll get hit with: Your car insurance rate also may skyrocket. Car insurers have found that if you get a ticket for, say, speeding or a DUI, you’re statistically more likely to make a car insurance claim – so to counter this risk, they hike up your rate.
Using data from a Mar. 2014 insuranceQuotes.com study, we present the top five moving violations that cause insurance rates to skyrocket nationwide, as well as exactly how much your rate could increase.
5. Failure to stop - Car insurance rate increase: 19%
Before you try to creep through that stop sign intersection without fully braking, consider the consequence if you’re caught and convicted: A 19 percent increase in your car insurance rate. So think twice before you try to perform a “rolling stop” or come to a halt past the limit line at an intersection.
4. Speeding 1-15 mph over the limit – Car insurance rate increase: 21%
While getting caught speeding significantly over the limit (31+ mph) can cause your rates to jump by 30 percent, being pulled over for exceeding the limit by just a few miles per hour also can increase your car insurance rate by a hefty 21 percent.
3. Careless driving – Car insurance rate increase: 27%
Wondering what a careless driving traffic ticket is for? Really, it can be up to the cop that pulls you over, but typically careless driving is classified as unsafe driving behavior that indicates a driver’s lack of attention or lack of consideration for other people on the road. A careless driving ticket could apply to the following behaviors:
- Using a cellphone while driving.
- Driving through a red light.
One careless driving charge could increase your car insurance rate by a significant 27 percent.
2. Reckless driving – Car insurance rate increase: 82%
A reckless driving charge is the 2nd costliest moving violation – this ticket can cause your car insurance rate to soar by over 80 percent. This major moving violation is considered a more serious offense than careless driving, as the convicted driver is considered to have displayed a wanton disregard for road rules and the safety of others on the road. What is considered reckless driving varies from state to state but it can include the following behaviors:
- Excessive speeding (for example, driving 20 mph over the posted speed limit.)
- Running a red light while pedestrians are waiting to cross the intersection.
1. DUI – Car insurance rate increase: 93%
It may not be surprising to most American drivers that if you’re convicted of a DUI, your car insurance rate will go up. But what may be shocking is how high that increase is – your car insurance rate may double and, in some states, your rate can even triple. For example, in Hawaii, a DUI charge can raise your rate by a staggering 289 percent.
What’s worse is that you are now considered a high-risk driver and in most states, you will pay inflated car insurance premiums for at least 5 years. In some states, like Massachusetts, your DUI remains on your driving record for a decade.